Nicolas Cage explained that he took inspiration from the treasured Hollywood heavyweight Humphrey Bogart when crafting the vocal performance for his role as Spider-Man Noir, in the striking new animation Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.

Speaking to HeyUGuys at the Macau Film Festival – where Cage is the ambassador for the third edition of this impressive annual event – he told us how he came to be involved in the project.

“I haven’t seen it yet but I’m looking forward to it,” he began. “It was a phone call I got from Sony Pictures that they were interested in me playing Spider-Man Noir and I met the directors and we met in downtown LA somewhere and they showed me what the movie was going to look like, and I thought it was going to be a beautiful, visual feast.”

“They mentioned this character Spider-Man Noir and I had already done Dog Eat Dog with Paul Schrader where I was playing with a Humphrey Bogart kind of style and affectation and I thought Spider-Man Noir could be fun to think about the voice as being almost like a 1930s noir film star, like a Cagney or a Bogart or an Edward G or any of these guys that talked fast and had a certain style and a rhythm to their delivery. So Spider-Man Noir became a kind of taste of that, not a precise impression of Bogart but more of a mix of all their flavours in terms of the way they would talk and a memory of that growing up with those movies, so that’s what was most exciting to me about playing the role.”

It’s not the first time that Cage has voiced a superhero in recent memory either, for he also took on the role of Superman in Teen Titans Go! To The Movies. But that, he recalled, was done for somewhat different reasons…

“I only did that movie because it’s my son Kal’s favourite show on television and he got a chance to play a part, as a young Bruce Wayne and he had one line and it was a great day because we went into the studio together and I was playing this cameo of Superman in Teen Titans and he had his line as Bruce Wayne and we loved the experience, I hope he’ll make more movies as a voice actor. Anyway they were entirely different experiences.”

The International Film Festival & Awards – Macau (IFFAM) runs from December 8-14th.